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Tech Cocktail

Njorku Helps People in Africa Find Much-Needed Jobs


South Africa had an unemployment rate of around 25% in 2010, and some other African countries fare much worse. It’s not necessarily because jobs are scarce: often, it’s a problem of candidates not knowing jobs are available, or facing discrimination based on their tribe. “In some cases these job seekers have to trek for miles… Read more »

Find Beta Testers for Your Startup with BetaPunch


Is your beta so quiet you can hear the crickets chirping? Or is that just the sound of your mom and dad clicking around? If you need to stir up some activity, consider trying BetaPunch. BetaPunch connects startups with beta testers, who can record their screens and get paid to play. They’ve attracted almost 500… Read more »

With Pinterest-Style Browsing, SparkRebel Wants to Be Your Online Mall


The evolution of search continues.  In addition to the new business ideas that have cropped up imitating/borrowing from the aesthetically pleasing UI of Pinterest (see: Linstagram or Pinstagram), there exists a new user expectation for browsing.  Naturally any item that can be searched visually soon will be, if it isn’t already.  Added exposure to a… Read more »

The Baltimore Startup Scene: Bizelo Founder Ron Schmelzer Shares Insights


Having been a part of starting and growing local startups for the better part of a decade, few people have as good a feel for the Baltimore startup scene as Ron Schmelzer.  From a baseball cap apparel company to a IT marketing intelligence firm, Schmelzer’s business ideas have changed, but his companies’ location hasn’t. Now onto his seventh year in… Read more »

ShinyNeedle: When Resumes Don’t Tell the Whole Story

hiring tool

Potential job candidates can look great on paper, but resumes often give no indication of their most important skills: critical thinking and problem solving, two things that are crucial in the workforce. A new website is offering a distinct way for employers to scope out top-notch talent. ShinyNeedle allows them to post job descriptions with… Read more »

Need Expert Advice? Turn to HighTable


If you’re looking for expert advice, where do you turn?  Probably friends, colleagues, your network, and/or LinkedIn Answers.  But how do you know if the advice you are getting is really good, or if it’s everything you should know about a certain topic? HighTable, which just launched in beta on April 2, was built to… Read more »

Ark Takes on Google’s Social Search Engine


Google has been fending off critics ever since it launched Search Plus Your World – which works more like Search Plus Our World, often favoring Google+ results. But beyond the hubbub, there’s a real problem here that Google’s trying to solve, albeit clumsily: people search. That’s the impetus for Ark, a recent Y Combinator grad… Read more »

Startup Update: ParkingPanda is in DC; New Features at UrbanSitter, Womply, BiteHunter and PowerInbox


Following the lead of metro-targeted startups like Uber, ParkMe and SeatMe, UrbanSitter is now offering an online payment feature.  With this new feature, the site that connects parents with babysitters through people they know should continue on its path of stellar growth, especially with the infusion of $1.75M in seed funding they closed on this… Read more »

How Safe Is Your Startup’s Proprietary Information?


This huge number should probably come as no surprise, but it’s still rather unnerving: Nearly 12 million Americans were victims of identity theft in 2011.  With so many of us storing proprietary information on not only our laptops, which we lug through cities and airports, but also our mobile devices, which we bring everywhere, we… Read more »